In a new interview with The Hollywood Reporter, The Witcher showrunner Lauren Schmidt Hissrich has confessed to having some regrets about season one of the show. The Witcher season two arrived on Netflix a few days ago, receiving more critical acclaim than the first season.
Some struggled with the non-linear plotting of the first season, which didn’t fully reveal itself until near the end and this prompted an amusing meta joke in season two; “it’s a bit complicated, took me until the fourth verse to understand there were different timelines.”
However, this is not really related to a regret that Hissrich has about season one. It’s actually about Ciri (Freya Allan); “I have to say that in season one, I don’t think that we paid enough attention to Ciri’s story. It’s one of my big regrets watching that season.”
She continues; “And so we worked really hard this season to make sure that we felt like we were on the path a lot more with Ciri, with Freya and sort of allowing her to fully explore this character.”
Hissrich concludes; “And I also think setting up the fact that Ciri becomes increasingly important in a series as it goes. Any book lover will tell you that she starts to become the centre of this narrative. And we also wanted to make sure we were setting that up.”
Hissrich continues to discuss why writing season one was tricky; “Season one was hard to write and, at times, I think, hard for viewers to follow because we took the approach of “throw everyone into the deep end.” I didn’t want to spend episode after episode explaining how magic worked or what the different kingdoms were and spending enough time with each of them so that we started to understand. I really wanted those things to unfold organically in the story.”
And she explains why season two was easier; “I mean, trust me, from a writing perspective, we would put things in, pull them out. Is this too dense now? Are we actually not giving enough of the world, the Continent, to allow viewers to understand what’s happening? So it’s a super fine tight rope. What I can say is that so much of that heavy lifting was done in season one, which means it was a joy to write season two because it became that much more just about the characters and their stories.”
If you’ve been enjoying season two of The Witcher, check out our guide the best fantasy movies.